It took hours of deliberation, three deadlocked votes and two rounds of questions, but city council selected Cape Coral's new auditor Thursday. Margaret Krym now assumes the title officially, after having served in an interim capacity since June 2010.
It came down to a two-way race between Krym and Lesia Johnson, who currently serves as the Senior Financial Systems Auditor for the City of Atlanta.
The two candidates caused city council to reach an impasse for nearly two hours, with the dais split exactly down the middle: Council members Erick Kuehn, Bill Deile, Pete Brandt and Mayor John Sullivan wanted Krym; council members Chris Chulakes-Leetz, Kevin McGrail, Marty McClain and Derrick Donnell all supported Johnson.
A motion to abandon the current candidates and re-advertise the job also failed.
It was finally McGrail who changed his vote and supported Krym, a decision he said was a vote of respect.
"I didn't want to discount her efforts and I didn't want to re-advertise the position, leaving her underpaid for the job she's doing for another year," McGrail said.
City council also approved a salary of $88,000 annually for Krym. She was making roughly $64,000 annually as the Interim Auditor.
Although they would have no say over who Krym decides to hire to fill her position of assistant city auditor, and the city would still have to advertise the position, council hoped that Johnson would consider taking the job and working for the city.
"I don't want to see her cast off, so to speak," said Bill Deile.
Krym was hired with a 5 3 vote.